How would you balance: #(NH_4)_2SO_4 + KOH -> K_2SO_4 + NH_3 + H_2O#?

1 Answer
Jan 2, 2016

Answer:

You balance it stoichiometrically. What do I mean?

Explanation:

In every chemical reaction, both MASS and CHARGE are conserved. This is stoichiometry: for every product particle, there is a corresponding reactant particle.

So:

#(NH_4)_2SO_4(aq) + 2KOH(aq) rarr K_2SO_4(aq) + 2NH_3(aq) + 2H_2O(l)#

Does this reaction satisfy the condition of stoichiometry? Charge is balanced certainly, but what about mass? There are 10 #H# particles as reactants. Are there 10 #H# products? If not, the reaction is not stoichiometric.

Stoichiometry is not only practised by chemists. It is practised by shop-keepers, bankers, and salesman. For every credit there must be a corresponding debit. If there is not then someone, (YOU!), has made a mistake.